There are elements of the StarCaps case involving Vikings defensive tackles Kevin and Pat Williams that only a lawyer would embrace. The bottom line for fans has been this: Can the Williamses play during the 2009 season or will they be facing four-game suspensions?

The answer is the former.

The Pro Bowl defensive tackles received a favorable ruling from a three-judge panel in the eighth circuit court of appeals today and thus will have their case go to trial in Hennepin County District Court at some point after the season.

The NFL can appeal this ruling but the bottom line is this case is going to remain tied up in the legal system for the long term and the league's ability to suspend the Williamses (while not dead) doesn't figure to be revisited anytime soon.

I'm beginning to think Pat Williams might be retired before this case is complete.

Update: We'll have locker room access this afternoon and provide reaction from the Vikings at that point.

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